WhatsApp will soon let you encrypt your chat backups with a password

WhatsApp will soon let you encrypt your chat backups with a password

Although WhatsApp offers end-to-end encryption, if you use its Chat backup feature your messages and media are not protected by end-to-end encryption when stored on Google Drive or iCloud. Instead, the backups are only protected by server-side encryption and the respective cloud storage services can decrypt the backups if the need arises. This makes the Chat backup solution less than ideal for the privacy-conscious. WhatsApp is now working on a new feature that will let you encrypt your chat backups with a password, thereby preventing third-party access without your authorization.

According to WhatsApp features tracker WABetaInfo, the Facebook-owned messenger has already started working on password-protected cloud backup encryption. The feature will let users protect their chat database and media from unauthorized access using a password. As you can see in the attached screenshots, the feature will prompt users to enter their phone numbers if they wish to encrypt their chat backups with a password. Then, it will let users set a password to encrypt future backups.

WABetaInfo further adds that your password won’t be shared with WhatsApp and the screenshots reveal that the messenger won’t be able to help you recover forgotten passwords for the same reason. As you can probably tell by looking at the screenshots, the upcoming feature will be available for both the iOS and Android versions of the app. It’s also worth noting that the feature will also work with local Android backups.

At the moment, WhatsApp hasn’t shared any official information about the feature. But we expect to learn more in the coming weeks. We’ll update this post as soon as it starts rolling out to users with a future update. It’s worth mentioning that this isn’t the first time we’re hearing about this feature. WABetaInfo first talked about it in May last year but, at the time, we didn’t have as much information about it.

Over the last few weeks, WhatsApp has been in the limelight for its updated privacy policy. The policy, which mandates data sharing with Facebook, has met with severe backlash from users worldwide. It has also triggered a mass exodus, with hundreds of thousands of users switching over to other alternatives like Telegram and Signal.

About author

Pranob Mehrotra
Pranob Mehrotra

A Literature and Linguistics graduate with a keen interest in everything Android. When not writing about tech, Pranob spends most of his time either playing League of Legends or lurking on Reddit.